2017 Geoffrey Beene National Scholarship Finalists
Introducing Amanda Nyamache, Academy of Art University
Major: Fashion Design
Hometown: I am originally from Charleston, Illinois. When I was 18, I enlisted into the U.S. Navy to finance my college education. I was stationed in Yokosuka, Japan for 4 years and I deployed to numerous countries across Asia. Afterwards, I moved to San Francisco, California to pursue my BFA in Fashion Design at the Academy of Art University.
What drew you to pursuing a career in fashion? I've always enjoyed art, drawing, and being creative from an early age. I took advanced and college level fine art courses in high school. But, I became interested in fashion after watching the Selena biopic in 6th grade. Besides, Selena's successful music career, she had also owned a boutique with her sister. Her passion and her determination to succeed really inspired me to pursue a career in fashion.
What types of activities are you involved with on campus at Academy of Art? I've been involved with my school's fashion club and veteran's club. Through the fashion club, I had the opportunity to volunteer backstage as a dresser for several fashion shows, which was a great learning experience.
Do you have any plans for after graduation? I hope to see myself continuing my education in Paris, France, by applying as an exchange student through my university's scholarship exchange program. Afterwards, I would like to return to the U.S. and work for a company in New York., while attending graduate school part-time. [In the future] I envision myself working as a senior designer or creative director for an admirable fashion house in New York or abroad.
How do you hope to make an impact on the future of fashion? I aspire to be a designer who leaves her mark in fashion through hard work and dedication. Sustainability is an important condition for me. I love fashion and making beautiful designs, but not at the expense of someone else. I will always try to make sustainable choices and I hope to contribute to a more sustainable industry. I also hope to inspire others to pursue their dreams through passion and determination.
What has been the most meaningful part of the YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund program since winning a $5,000 scholarship? After winning the YMA competition last year it created more opportunities for me. Through the YMA program I was able to attain my first summer internship in New York at Kenneth Cole. It was a rewarding experience to intern at a respected company and see the daily tasks performed by the design teams. I also gained valuable industry contacts through the mentorship program and summer Breakfast with the Boss sessions.
What does winning a YMA Fashion Scholarship Fund Geoffrey Beene Scholarship mean to you? I view the Geoffrey Beene Scholarship as an opportunity and an investment in my future. Winning this scholarship would further boost my confidence and motivate me to succeed. It would also assist in covering my expenses while continuing my education and provide further incentive to gain international experience.